Aug. 13, 2020
Early in 1994 I took a new job as a computer programmer for a company based out of Dudley in the West Midlands. At the age of 28, one would expect some maturity but, with incredible naivety, I went up to Dudley the weekend before my start date without anywhere to live. I spent a night or two sleeping in pubs and then ran into a guy selling watches from inside his coat who knew another guy who could sub-let a room in his council flat. That at least gave me a base to impress my new employers from and surprisingly it worked. I did well and by the end of the year had upgraded to a flat of my own. Dudley had some good, old-fashioned pubs, great takeaways and a decent second-hand record shop where I spent most lunch-times. There was also JB's,a music venue where I got to see the likes of Chumbwumba, Shed Seven, Supergrass, Dr and the Medics and Bad Manners. I would take the train back to Cheltenham most weekends to watch my beloved Cheltenham Town and would buy records in the center of Birmingham on the way. As you can tell, it was the start of a jet-set lifestyle.